SEARCA and Yezin Agricultural University hold first SFRT Myanmar Grantees Forum
SFRT Grantees with YAU Officials headed by Dr. Myo Kywe (fifth from left) and SEARCA staff led by Dr. Bessie Burgos (fourth from left)
Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar – The first Seed Fund for Research and Training (SFRT) Myanmar Grantees Forum, jointly organized by SEARCA and the Yezin Agricultural University (YAU), was held at YAU in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar on 29 May 2015. It was attended by officials, faculty, staff, and graduate students of YAU led by its Rector, Dr. Myo Kywe, staff from the Department of Planning, Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation (MOAI) of the Union of the Republic of Myanmar, and representatives of SEARCA led by Dr. Bessie Burgos, Program Head for Research and Development.
The Seed Fund for Research and Training (SFRT) Program has been providing grants since 2005 to researchers, scientists, and development practitioners whose desire to contribute to the development of Southeast Asia through research and knowledge dissemination initiatives is constrained by lack of funds. To date, 83 grants have been awarded to selected proponents from nine countries in the region which focused on SEARCA priority thrusts as embodied in its Five Year Plans.
Cognizant that research results, to be useful, have to be disseminated to stakeholders and the general public, SEARCA has endeavored to gather SFRT grantees of a country in one venue to present their respective research results to an audience of stakeholders and interested parties. Through this Forum, SEARCA hopes to proactively contribute to the knowledge base on the subject matter and to a vibrant scientific exchange and to provide the opportunity for stakeholders and the general public to learn of the results and apply what is useful towards growth and development in their community or in their field of endeavor.
Dr. Myo Kywe warmly welcomed the forum participants and voiced his hope that the event would truly be one of sharing and learning. He stated his appreciation for SEARCA for co-organizing the forum with the university as well as for the institutional development assistance it has extended YAU. He looked forward to a continuing collaboration with SEARCA.
Dr. Bessie Burgos presenting tokens to the SFRT GranteesDr. Bessie M. Burgos, on behalf of SEARCA, reiterated the Center’s continuing support for YAU under its Institutional Development Assistance Program. She mentioned the various programs of the Center which could be availed of by Myanmar nationals in developing and implementing research projects and disseminating results. She also explained upcoming events at SEARCA which could be of interest and benefit to YAU and MOAI. She ended on the note that she hoped many more would be inspired to participate in SEARCA’s programs and activities.
Towards encouraging others to participate in the SFRT, Ms. Carmen Nyhria G. Rogel, Program Specialist for SEARCA’s Research and Development Department, explained the SFRT Program rationale and objectives, proponents and features of the grant, and the importance of disseminating research results through fora and publications. She urged those present to visit the SEARCA website where all information on the grants program is available and to start developing excellent proposals for submission on or before the annual August 1 deadline.
Six Myanmar nationals have been recipients of the SFRT grant since it started in Fiscal Year 2005-2006. Two of these were just awarded for the current fiscal year. Hence, in the forum, four presented their research results and one of the current grantees presented her research plan, as follows:
Year of SFRT Grant
Name and Institution
Research Results/Plan Presented
Dr. Khin Oo
Department of Agronomy, YAU
Impacts of Cyclone Nargis on Livelihoods and Food Security in Selected Areas in Bogalay, Myanmar
Dr. Dolly Kyaw
Department of Agricultural Economics, YAU
Ecosystem Approach to Sustainable Farming System and Assessment of Farm Households’ Food Security in Nautmouk Township (Magway Region-Dry Zone) in Myanmar
Dr. Thanda Kyi
Department of Agricultural Planning, MOAI
Assessment of Vulnerability and Risk for Adaptation of Rural Farmers in Central Dry Zone of Myanmar: Farm Level Case Study
Dr. Nyo Nyo
Department of Horticulture, YAU
Horticultural Poduce Supply System and Quality Management in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar
Dr. Theingi Myint
Department of Agricultural Economics, YAU
Determinants of Food Security of Vulnerable Rural Households at the Central Region, Myanmar
Ms. Seinn Seinn Mu of MOAI, the second Myanmar grantee for 2014-2015, was unable to participate in the forum to present her research plan for her study titled “Impact of Rural Out Migration on the Resilience of Agricultural System of Rice Farmers in Lower Ayeyarwady Delta, Myanmar.”
After a brief open forum with the audience, the activity was closed on a note of appreciation for the grantees and presenters, YAU and its leadership, all those present, and for Dr. Myint Thuzar, SEARCA Scholarship Alumna and YAU Director for International Relations, for the efficient conduct of the activity. (Carmen Nyhria G. Rogel)